(4-12-23) As the school year winds down it is time to look at some of the the changes taking place with Northwest Ohio athletic conferences.

The past several years has seen some numerous changes…the domino effect gone wild.

The Three Rivers Athletic Conference (TRAC) will be a trivia question in the future, as member schools head to three different venues after the school year ends. The Northern Lakes League will pick up some of those TRAC members, the Toledo City League adds Lima Sr. and the four TRAC catholic schools head north and cross the stateline to compete with other private schools in the Detroit area in the Catholic High School League.

The Blanchard Valley Conference is still very fragile, with changes constantly taking place. The Northwest Central Conference is always adapting to membership changes and you can say they have fought very hard to survive over the years.

This story updated after posting from Ada—

March 30th Ada Schools BOE Meetingcourtesy Ada Icon

In the New Business segment of the meeting, board members discussed the opportunity to join the Blanchard Valley Conference, their impressions of the March 6 community forum on this topic, and their perspectives on the issue. Board president Matt Gossman noted the lack of depth on Ada teams and said he felt Ada would be competitive in the BVC. Vice President Amy Mullins did not comment. Ron Fleming said he was leaning toward the change and noted that while football is seen as guiding this decision, soccer is becoming more popular and that children begin to play soccer at a very young age. Ted Griffith was disappointed that individual schools in the BVC had not reached out to Ada and said he was not ready to vote. Steve Ramey praised the way participants discussed the change and the public meeting and noted the risk of injury for younger football players.

Gossman called for the issue to be put on the April agenda.

Ada Icon stories –

Here are some examples from around Northwest Ohio and Ohio.

Two schools that are still looking for a permanent conference home …Liberty-Benton and Lima Central Catholic…the only thing that they have done in the past is that they both have dominated their past conferences and were no longer wanted. Both were asked to leave those conferences.

Lima Central Catholic (LCC) has been an independent for a long stretch of time after getting the boot from the Northwest Conference (NWC).

LCC AD Mike Rumschlag in an email reply to SSN on the T-Birds conference situation-

Nothing to report on regarding a conference. I have begun forming a focus group to research and prepare plans for LCC’s best interest as an institution.

Liberty-Benton still has a couple of years to find a new conference home when they finally do leave the BVC.

L-B Superintendent Mark Kowalski gave SSN an update on their search –

We are currently in discussions with several leagues in Northwest Ohio but nothing is finalized at this time.

Just to state that location of the two schools is NOT the issue…but their winning ways over the years.

Next door in Indiana, Ft. Wayne Blackhawk Christian has been ‘rumored‘ to be looking to join a conference (currently an independent), possibly football only. The Braves, who played the 8-man game last year, will be moving to an 11-man football schedule this season. This fall Blackhawk Christian will play several Ohio schools …Cardinal Stritch and Vanlue.

The ACAC, which presently has seven conference members (rumor), by adding the Braves they could solve the football scheduling problems by adding them as the 8th member. Will the ACAC want to add them as a full-member or football only? The reason why that is a concern is the strong overall BC athletic programs are very competitive.

In a reply to SSN Blackhawk Christian AD Joel Cotton told us-

We have not been asked by the ACAC to join their conference.

Did you know…

Did you know that in the 1980’s Blackhawk Christian, Temple Christian, Ohio City and Mendon competed in the Frontier Conference.

December 1985 – Mercer County Chronicle